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The Hobbit | Chapter Summaries

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Timeline of Events

  • April, Third Age, 2941

    Gandalf chooses Bilbo as the burglar for the adventure; the team sets off.

    Chapter 1
  • May

    After various attacks, the troop rests at Rivendell.

    Chapter 3
  • June

    Goblins capture the team; Bilbo is left behind.

    Chapter 4
  • June

    Bilbo encounters Gollum and steals his ring.

    Chapter 5
  • July

    The team stays with Beorn; Gandalf leaves.

    Chapter 7
  • August

    Bilbo saves the dwarves from spider and elf attacks.

    Chapter 8
  • October

    The team reaches Smaug's lair; Bilbo steals the cup.

    Chapter 12
  • October

    Smaug attacks Lake-town; Bard kills Smaug.

    Chapter 14
  • November

    The Battle of Five Armies takes place; Thorin dies.

    Chapter 16
  • June, the following year

    Bilbo returns to the Shire.

    Chapter 19

Chapter Summaries Chart

Chapter Summary
Chapter 1 Bilbo Baggins is a simple hobbit with a simple life. His quiet life is interrupted when a group of dwarves and a famous ... Read More
Chapter 2 Bilbo Baggins's fierceness and desire for adventure are tested as the cold, wet, and hungry party searches for a meal an... Read More
Chapter 3 The dwarves, Bilbo Baggins, and Gandalf continue their journey to Lonely Mountain and come to the edge of the Wild. Gand... Read More
Chapter 4 The journey becomes quite difficult as the group gets caught in a mighty storm—a "thunder-battle" filled will rain, ligh... Read More
Chapter 5 Bilbo Baggins awakens to find himself alone in the dark. In the turning point of the adventure, he finds a tiny ring as ... Read More
Chapter 6 After escaping the goblins, Bilbo Baggins catches up with the rest of his friends. He retells the story of his escape wi... Read More
Chapter 7 The eagles take the group as far south as possible to the Carrock. Gandalf tells them of his plans to leave soon, but fi... Read More
Chapter 8 The group enters the dark and dreary forest. The farther along they go, the more downcast and hopeless they feel. They c... Read More
Chapter 9 As the dwarves desperately seek to find a way out of the forest before starving, they are taken prisoner by the Wood-elv... Read More
Chapter 10 After the dwarves recover from the uncomfortable trip downriver, Thorin presents himself to Lake-town's Master and descr... Read More
Chapter 11 As Bilbo Baggins and the dwarves travel through the desolation of Smaug, their mood changes. While they are geographical... Read More
Chapter 12 At this point in the adventure, Bilbo Baggins undertakes the most dangerous feat he has been asked to perform. Assuming ... Read More
Chapter 13 The expedition is trapped in the secret passage for several days. The group realizes Smaug has disappeared from his lair... Read More
Chapter 14 As the dwarves and Bilbo Baggins explore the vast caverns, the narrator reports Smaug's wrathful attack on Lake-town. Ba... Read More
Chapter 15 Back at the stronghold the group notes the unusual activity of the birds. Roäc, an ancient raven, arrives and delivers b... Read More
Chapter 16 Several days pass in a standoff; the dwarves are trapped inside Lonely Mountain, and the armed men and elves block the e... Read More
Chapter 17 The following morning, negotiators approach the gates and reveal the Arkenstone, hoping it will move Thorin to make a de... Read More
Chapter 18 Bilbo Baggins is knocked out shortly after spotting the eagles and misses the end of the conflict. A soldier finds the u... Read More
Chapter 19 The final stop before Bilbo Baggins reaches home is Rivendell, where the elves greet him with a song to celebrate the dr... Read More
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